- The Website
- Technical Overview
- An actual T-shirt I got after the project, perfectly summarising why I hadn't seen enough sun that summer...
The fiftieth anniversary of Martin Luther King's speech was as good an occasion as any other to work on another interesting hack. What I've managed to pull off:
- My first time with Google's Compute Engine. At the same time, Compute Engine's one of first few times with anyone outside of Google's secret labs. That's right, our friends at Google have let us have a sneak peek before the service went officially public!
- The aforementioned GCE instances had to scale up to variable load... That was long before there was any autoscaling baked in. So I wrote a simple system for spinning up & killing off instances in response to demand.
- The aforementioned GCE instances ran Pure Data in headless mode to do some DSP work on the uploaded sound files!
The website used to allow visitors to record their own version of MLK's speech. While all the interesting recording work happened on the frontend, my backend was in charge of DSP & effects processing. Now of course I could've written a bunch of scripts to run various crazy filters on the command line... ...However it was not me that was the sound designer. The guy was a couple hundred kilometers away, and there was no way in hell I'd be explaining him how to install Linux, just so we can build an audio processing pipeline.
So I had to choose something that was fairly powerful for DSP... And that also had a moderately user-friendly interface... And that could run unmodified on a headless server, somewhere in a datacenter at the other side of the globe... Pure Data was more than a perfect match!